Sunday, July 5, 2009

My Love/Hate relationship with silk.....

I love/hate silk. It is one of my most favorite/feared yarns to work with. I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE the colours and sheen of silk, the drapiness (not a word, apparently) of the fabric, the summer wearability factor, the feel of the yarn as I knit it.... I even like the smell (although I have recently discovered, and maybe it's just me, that wet sea silk smells like decomposing seaweed (probably because that's what it's derived from)..... which is kinda gross, but does remind me of the ocean, so I kind of like it anyway)...... What I don't like about silk is the unpredictability of the finished product. Maybe it's just me, but I can't seem to get the "growth" factor straight in my head. Take this, recently finished item.

It's made from Tilli Thomas Pure and Simple and crocheted.... It washed beautifully and has wonderful drape and feels GREAT on... I LOVE it! It sucked me right in to the gloriousness that CAN be silk....

Then I knit this. It is also made from Tilli Thomas Pure and Simple. The first picture is pre-wash, the second is post-wash. Notice the change in length and width in the second picture... although I do like the ruffle much better now, I wish I hadn't added length when I knit it... and I feel like it's too big for me now... but I wear it anyway.

Yesterday, I finished this..... I really wish I had taken pictures of it first because... HOLY CRAP! did this sucker grow! It was a bit long even when I finished it, but before I washed it 'cause my sH** A** (excuse my language) gauge swatches LIED and not a little lie either... I did several swatches (meaning 3) because my gauge was way too loose... I finally went down from a 3.25mm to a 2.5 mm needle... The finished gauge (which I just measured) on my sweater is 25 stitches/4" on the 2.5mm needle, not 26 stitches/4" as per the pattern instructions..... I didn't even bother to measure the height gauge because I fear the answer.... hence the HUGENESS of the resulting sweater.... It's not supposed to be a tunic damn it! The sleeves are supposed to be shorter, a 3/4 length, not a cropped length AND the V-neck was only supposed to be 1 inch lower than the original pattern, not 72 inches lower like in the pictures..... I am glad that I eliminated the hood in the original pattern...because it probably would have hung so low that I could have carried several children in it.....

and yes, I realize that the pictures aren't that bad... even kinda good... but you'll have to trust me... I don't think it's flattering on me at all... I may give it to my friend Christina, unless I decide that I actually do like it... we shall see....

I think silk and I need a break.... perhaps Linen and I will be a better match??


  1. I think you should keep that last sweater - it is very tunic style with the length and the lace drapes nicely with the width! How do you get so many sweaters done?

  2. i'm with terra. it might not have turned out like you had planned, but it's still a very nice something different.

    tho.. if i was christina i would be telling us both to shut the heck up.


  3. Thanks both of you, but it really IS ugly on me (I had to take many pictures before I got some decent ones)...... If it doesn't look "fantastic" on Christina, I will keep it... but I'd rather have her wear it beautifully, than me wear it and look OK... :)

  4. Even with the gauge problems everything looks good on you and doesn't seem to be out of proportion.